Spell out stand on panel regulating MCI by Tuesday: Supreme Court tells govt
The five-judge bench, headed by Chief Justice JS Khehar, told solicitor general Ranjit Kumar that there must be an alternative mechanism to deal with the issues ailing the country’s medical colleges.india Updated: Jul 17, 2017 23:29 IST
The Supreme Court has given the Centre until Tuesday to spell out its stand on the status of the oversight committee (OC), constituted by the apex court last year to oversee the functioning of the Medical Council of India (MCI).
Headed by former Chief Justice RM Lodha, the three-member committee’s year-long tenure has come to an end with the top court still waiting to learn if the Centre has extended its term or “put in place any other appropriate mechanism” — conditions it had laid out while forming the committee to lay the groundwork for the overhaul of the regulatory body (MCI), which, the court feels, has failed in discharging its duties.
The five-judge bench, headed by Chief Justice JS Khehar, told solicitor general Ranjit Kumar that there must be an
alternative mechanism to deal with the issues ailing the country’s medical colleges, concerns which justice Lodha had flagged last year.
The bench rejected Kumar’s submission that a five-member committee, headed by the special director of health services, will be in place to address the grievances arising out of the shoddy functioning of the Medical Council of India , which regulates the country’s medical education and the profession.
Kumar also told the court that the National Medical Commission Bill, which replaces the MCI, was before a group of ministers which had approved the draft Bill.
But the solicitor general could not assure the court if the Bill would be taken up for discussion in the monsoon session of Parliament, which began on Monday. The session with 14 non-Friday working days will conclude on August 11.
Several medical colleges have submitted before the court that the object of the oversight committee was to ensure the Centre came out with a law and that until such time, the panel will remain in place.
When the Chief Justice of India pointed out that the order was clear the committee’s term will only be for a year, the colleges requested that the court extend its tenure until the legislation was enacted.
Former attorney general Mukul Rohatgi, appearing for a private college, said the malady affecting the regulatory body continues to exist, as the remedial measures suggested by the top court were yet to be addressed.